Term Dates & Holidays
School education lays the vital foundations of a childs life. Research clearly demonstrates the link between regular attendance and educational progress and attainment. Parents/carers and the school staff should work in partnership in making education a success and in ensuring that all children have full and equal access to all that the school has to offer. As a school, we will encourage parents and carers to ensure that their child achieves maximum possible attendance and that any problems that prevent this are identified and acted on promptly. As parents, it is their responsibility to ensure that their children arrive at school and return home safely.
We expect that all pupils will:
- Attend school every day
- Attend school punctually
- Attend appropriately prepared for the day
- Discuss promptly with their class teacher or school office any problems that may affect their school attendance
We expect that all parents/carers will:
- Ensure regular school attendance and be aware of their legal responsibilities.
- Ensure that their child arrives at school punctually and prepared for the school day.
- Ensure that they contact the school daily of absence or if known in advance, whenever their child is unable to attend school.
- Provide medical proof if their child is absent for more than 3 consecutive days. In the case of Nursery children, medical proof required after 5 consecutive days.
- Contact school promptly whenever any problem occurs that may keep their child away from school.
- Notify the school of any home circumstances that might affect the behaviour and learning of their child.
- Notify school immediately of any changes to contact details.
Amendments have been made to the 2006 regulations removing references to family holidays and extended leave as well as the statutory threshold of ten school days. The amendments make it clear that Headteacher’s may not grant any leave of absence during term time for holidays.
This means that we are no longer able to authorise any term time absence for holidays.
Department for Education states: “Term times are for education. This is the priority.” Children and families have 175 days off school to spend time together, including weekends and school holidays. Newcomen Primary School will rightly prioritise attendance and adhere to DfE and LA guidelines. The school policy is that absences will not be granted during term time and will only be authorised in exceptional circumstances (see below).
If an event can reasonably be scheduled outside of term time, then it would not be normal to authorise absence.
Absence during term time for holidays/vacations is therefore not considered an exceptional circumstance.
School defines an ‘exceptional circumstance’ as a one-off request during a childs time at Newcomen Primary School (for example, 1 day for a family wedding within immediate family, 1 day for a family funeral, serious illness of a family member and service personnel returning from tours of duty).
We appreciate all individual circumstances and work commitments. However, in line with statutory guidance, work holiday rotas cannot be accepted as these are not deemed exceptional circumstances.
Removing a child from school to take a family holiday will be recorded as unauthorised and referred to the Local Authority. This will result in a penalty notice being issued to the Parents of the child. The penalty is £60 if paid within 21 days or £120 if paid within 28 days. Penalty notices are issued to each parent, for each child.
Examples of Authorised Absence
- genuine illness of a pupil
- hospital/dental/doctors appointment for the pupil (accompanied by medical appointment card/letter)
- major religious observances
- visits to prospective new schools
- external exams or educational assessments
Examples of Unauthorised Absences
- shopping/day trip/visit to a theme park
- a birthday treat
- oversleeping due to late night
- appointments for other family members
- family holiday
I hope that this clarifies the new regulations which all schools must enforce .
Miss Pusztai and The Governing Board of Newcomen Primary School